The Emergency Responder Safety Institute is pleased to congratulate ERSI Charter Member Chief Joe Kroboth, III, PE, on his appointment as a Technical Member of the National Committee on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (NCUTCD). He will serve on the Temporary Traffic Control Technical Committee. The NCUTCD is responsible for the technical aspects and development of the Federal Highway Administration’s Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD). The MUTCD is a national standard detailing requirements for roadway features and operations such as signs, pavement marking, traffic signals, railroad grade crossings, personal protective equipment, and temporary traffic control devices. Kroboth’s appointment was approved based on his combined background in transportation engineering and construction coupled with more than 40 years of fire service experience operating at highway incidents. Kroboth is the President of the Cumberland Valley Volunteer Fireman’s Association, the organization that founded and oversees the Emergency Responder Safety Institute.
Kroboth is a 35-year career professional in public sector transportation and capital infrastructure. He is currently the Director of Transportation and Capital Infrastructure for Loudoun County, VA. Kroboth serves on other technical committees, including NFPA 502: Standards for Road Tunnels, Bridges, and Other Limited Access Highways and the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials’ Committee on Geometric Design of Streets and Highways. He brings a wealth of experience and expertise to the NCUTCD committee, not just in transportation, but also in fire service operations. “I am humbled and delighted to accept this appointment,” said Kroboth. “Given my long career in transportation and experiences as a volunteer firefighter, I feel a responsibility to advocate for the safety of all parties impacted by the MUTCD, whether they are highway workers, emergency responders, or the public. We must keep striving to improve the standards that govern our roadways and craft them to reflect the realities of today’s society and technology.”
Kroboth joins Jack Sullivan, ERSI Director of Training, who has served with distinction on the NCUTCD since 2009. As fire and emergency services professionals with an intimate knowledge of roadway incident response safety and traffic control, Kroboth and Sullivan are important voices who bring the first responder’s perspective to the development of the MUTCD. “Emergency responders must have input into standards like the MUTCD,” said Sullivan. “The boots on the ground are the ones responsible for implementing the provisions of the MUTCD and the ones in harm’s way from oncoming traffic. We need to be in the room to say how these requirements are going to affect us and what we need to be better protected on the roadway. I’m thrilled Joe has stepped up to be one of those voices.”
Kroboth’s ties to the fire service in Maryland are deep. He is the retired Director of Fire and Emergency Services for Washington County, MD and currently an Assistant Fire Chief of the Longmeadow Fire Company in Hagerstown, MD. Kroboth is also a family survivor of a struck-by line-of-duty death. His father, Chief Joe Kroboth, Jr. of The Volunteer Fire Company of Halfway, MD, was struck by a vehicle and killed in 1998 while working an incident on I-81 in Washington County, MD. Kroboth III subsequently served as Chief of his father’s department. The elder Chief Kroboth’s death and the Pennsylvania Turnpike incident that same year were the catalysts for the founding of the Emergency Responder Safety Institute.
To learn more about the MUTCD and how its requirements apply to emergency responders, please visit the Responder Safety Learning Network (RSLN.org) and watch the module titled, “Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices.”